DeGregory spent four months reporting this story about a 14-year-old girl, Lillie, her newborn son, Thomas, and the woman who takes her in, Amy. DeGregory’s structure is lucid, the scenes intimate. She shows once again her knack for highlighting small, telling moments and details—ones that define her characters without over-simplifying them. Here’s an example from the middle of the piece, after Lillie and Thomas have moved in with Amy, her husband and their five kids:

“That night, Thomas’ breathing monitor went off seven times.

“Lillie slept through it. Amy got up every hour.”

Through moments like this, DeGregory builds plot while shaping the story and showing us why things turn out the way they do.

Read “Good Intentions,” by Lane DeGregory

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